Lettuce wraps are now available at many popular restaurants and fast food chains (Red Robin, Jimmy Johns to cite a couple). They can be great low carb lunches on the go, and the lack of thick bread or buns allows the taste of the filling to shine through. The filling is the important part of the wrap in my mind, and it can be quite creative and versatile. I like to add avocados and spice, but the beauty of wraps is that, like sandwiches, you can easily mix and match ingredients. The recipe below is for a low carb lettuce wrap with chicken, and it is an easy lunch or dinner to make at home when time is tight.
Chipotle has become one of the go-to restaurants for slow carb lunches, but if you are leading a ketogenic lifestyle you probably don’t want the beans. Lettuce wraps can satisfy all kinds of low carb diets however, and they make for a quick and easy option if you’re at work or on the road. I was particularly surprised on a recent road trip when we stopped at a Red Robin off the highway and they had all of their hamburger options available as lettuce wraps. To top it off they provided green veggies on the side as a substitute for french fries. I thought I was going to be relegated to the salad bar when we first pulled in to a chain restaurant, but was pleasantly surprised with the bacon and swiss burger wrap. Just ask for extra butter to go with the veggie side!
A low carb lettuce wrap is easy peasy to make at home for a lunch or weeknight dinner, especially if you use prepared proteins like roasted chicken or deli turkey. Adding the extra step of sauteing some ground chicken or other protein is also pretty quick however, and makes for a great low maintenance dinner on a cool summer evening. The recipe below adds a little Asian flair with some soy sauce, ginger and hot sauce. Low carb has never been so easy!
Recipe for Low Carb Lettuce Wrap with Chicken
Yield 4 servings
- 1-2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 pound chicken, ground or chopped finely
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 onion, diced
- 1/4 cup hoisin sauce (some sugar in this)
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
- 1 teaspoon Sriracha, or more, to taste
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 head lettuce, butter or romaine
- For no-cook wraps, chop up roasted chicken from the grocery store or deli. For a low carb lettuce wrap with ground chicken, heat olive oil in a saucepan over medium high heat. Add ground chicken and cook until browned, about 3-5 minutes, making sure to crumble the chicken as it cooks; drain excess fat.
- Mix together the garlic, onion, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, ginger and Sriracha. Saute in olive oil until onions have become translucent, about 1-2 minutes (if using ground chicken, saute in the same pan as chicken). Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
- To serve, spoon several tablespoons of the chicken mixture into the center of a lettuce leaf, taco-style and enjoy.
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